Cosmic Trigger 4th – 27th May 2017

May 8, 2017

The Play by Daisy Eris Campbell. Adapted from Robert Anton Wilson’s seminal autobiography Cosmic Trigger: The Final Secret of The Illuminati. See it at The Cockpit – Gateforth St, Marylebone, London NW8 8EH. BUY TICKETS HERE

“Robert Anton Wilson’s ‘Illuminatus!’ had a profound effect on me and the Cosmic Trigger Play will no doubt do the same for a whole new generation.” Alan Moore, writer/author of V for Vendetta, Watchmen and Jerusalem

Turn On. Tune In. Find The Others

In 1976 maverick playwright and director Ken Campbell staged Robert Anton Wilson’s, Illuminatus! – a nine-hour stage play that helped launch the careers of Jim Broadbent and Bill Nighy. It also led to the backstage conception of a baby girl; Daisy Eris Campbell.

“One of the most original and unclassifiable talents in British theatre of the past half-century” The Guardian obituary for Ken Campbell – 2008

Now Love & Will Productions and The Cockpit are delighted to announce the debut full run of Daisy Campbell’s adaptation of Wilson’s seminal countercultural text; Cosmic Trigger. Part sequel, part revisit, part homage, part new writing; this is the story behind the notorious conspiracy satire, ‘Illuminatus!’, the extraordinary life of the novel’s author, Robert Anton Wilson, and the unstoppable force that was theatre legend Ken Campbell.

Daisy Campbell says; “Reading Cosmic Trigger changed my life and the lives of many others – and the book is dedicated to my Dad. Wilson’s uniquely optimistic and radically agnostic philosophy is incredibly relevant in these crazy times. We are absolutely thrilled to be working with The Cockpit on this production. They are the perfect co-conspirators to help us bring the wit and wisdom of Robert Anton Wilson back to life.”

The original work reinterpreted world history as a giant conspiracy theory and Daisy’s new work gives a backstory to the original production, featuring the lives of Wilson and Campbell, as well as the counterculture figures Timothy Leary, Alan Watts and William Burroughs, whom Robert Anton Wilson befriended.

Set in the late sixties and early seventies, the play recounts the period of Wilson’s life around the conception and writing of Illuminatus. During this time, he befriended heroes of counterculture, took LSD and experimented with the magical rituals of Aleister Crowley with predictably – and unpredictably – mind-blowing results.

With many of the original cast returning and Alan Moore appearing via specially recorded audio and morphed video projections Cosmic Trigger is a celebration of all that has gone before it as well as a vital venture in its own right. This is a highly ambitious production, with projections in the round, phantasmagorical multiple narratives, and a different actor performing as William Burroughs every night, it is designed to evoke the real-life hallucinogenic trip through conspiracy, paranoia and enlightenment that transformed Robert Anton Wilson from ‘Playboy’ editor to much-loved counter-cultural icon.

Dave Wybrow, Artistic Director of the Cockpit and co producer of Cosmic Trigger says; “We are putting together a venue, a tribe and new ways of networking and creating work. It’s about joining low tech to hi tech, low culture to high culture and low budgets to high levels of audience reach and social impact. This first venture looks at counter-cultural legacy. But the vision is an open artistic community for the future.”

Cosmic Trigger previously played for two days in November in Camp & Furnace in Liverpool and five days at Lost Theatre Vauxhall in London in 2014 – this is the play’s first full run.


Broadway World

London City Nights

The Upcoming

The Stage

International Times

The Guardian

The Times

Cosmic Trigger The Times Online Version

Arthur Smith interviews Daisy Campbell on Radio 4 xtra:
Short thing with Arthur Smith (more like a plug)

Cosmic Trigger – 4th – 27th May 2017 at The Cockpit

Cosmic Trigger Press release

Related Materials:

Listen to Iron Man Records Release: Robert Anton Wilson meets Steve “Fly Agaric” Pratt

Listen to Cosmic Trigger I: Final Secret of the Illuminati (Audio Book) Written by Robert Anton Wilson and 
Narrated by Oliver Senton

Free The Weed 39 – by John Sinclair

May 25, 2014

John Sinclair at 12 Bar Club, London, Sunday 11th May 2014

Highest greetings from London, where it’s still a crime to smoke and possess cannabis products and the medical use of marijuana is not yet recognized by the forces of the Crown. Like the guy at Customs told me a couple of years ago when he seized my medically prescribed cannabis in its official Dutch medical container and refused my offer to present my Dutch prescription and my Michigan medical marijuana card: “This is just smuggling drugs to us.”

I’m in London to mark the release of my new album MOHAWK from Ironman Records and play a couple of little gigs with my drummer and comrade Steve The Fly, who produced the album for me in Amsterdam and is here with me for the month where we’re guests of Caleb Selah and The Fuck You Sound internet radio studios in the Blackheath sector of southeast London.

We’re in good hands here and our medical and recreational needs are being well attended, and that’s a very good thing. At the end of the month I’ll be enjoying the great honor of opening for Marshall Allen & The Sun Ra Arkestra at the Sun Ra Centennial concert at the Barbican Centre—one of the highest points of my performing arts career, now in its 50th year, and I’m very happy to be here.

But I have to confess that I’m looking forward to fulfilling my artistic duties here and moving on to my favorite roost, the beautiful city of Amsterdam, where my daily life is centered on the coffeeshop called the 420 Café located right in the center of the city. I’m the Poet In Residence at the 420 when I’m in town and I take my post there just about every afternoon, plug in my laptop, have a coffee and roll a joint, greet my friends, conduct my correspondence, record my radio shows and work on scheduling and posting the programs for my internet radio station,

As a poet, writer, internet broadcaster and public intellectual fueled by art, information, marijuana and espresso, there’s no better place for me than the 420 Café to hang out and get my work done without interruption or discomfort. In my travels and in daily life, all I need to keep up with my work is a place with Wi-Fi to plug in and work my keyboard, and I’m usually hunched over my MacBook at a table in somebody’s kitchen as a guest in their home, but it’s far more satisfying for me to be able to take care of my little business in a public setting where I can quietly fit in to the flow of humanity around me and feel more like a human being myself.

Since I left New Orleans in 2003 to try to base myself in Amsterdam I haven’t had a home of my own, and after my first 60 years residing in a series of apartments and houses while I found my way in life, married, had children, remarried, gained more children and somehow got them all through the Detroit public schools, then moved to New Orleans and spent 12 years in residence there with my wife Penny, I was ready for something different.

A house fire in New Orleans in 2000 burnt up my most prized possessions, my music and book collections, and with the counseling of my Buddhist friends I learned to live without them. I set out for Amsterdam a couple of years later with “a suitcase stuffed with clothing / & a bag full of manuscripts / & hand-burnt CDs.” My wife was settled in Detroit attending to her aging mother while I went ahead to try to make a place for us across the Atlantic Ocean, but it turned out she didn’t like it there and decided to stay in Detroit. So I left the furniture and all my other possessions there with her and kept on with my quest to establish myself in a strange—but very comfortable—new place with very few material encumbrances.

After a lifetime as a tenant with familial responsibilities I was on my own in a foreign land without a housing budget or any visible means of support, suddenly dependent on my friends and sympathizers for a place to sleep and the means of survival. Twelve years in New Orleans living by my wits as a music writer, performer, community radio broadcaster and slash-&-burn barnstorming bard had produced barely enough remuneration to keep up with the rent, and I concluded that if I had to starve in New Orleans, I could just as well try to starve in Amsterdam where at the very least I wouldn’t have to be worrying about the police and nobody was armed.

So I starved for several years until I could get my footing, but the 420 Café has sustained me throughout my entire occupation of Amsterdam and provided me with a stable base from which to operate, ensure my survival, make new friends, and keep up with my self-imposed workload. They play music that you can listen to, my own tunes are on the playlist, the splendid staff of the 420 has furnished some of my closest friends, and I’m always made to feel more than welcome in the warm, comfortable environs of this old-school cannabis café.

The great thing about the cannabis café culture is that there’s one for everybody. There used to be 750 coffeeshops in Amsterdam, but even with the continual shrinkage mandated by the government over the past 20 years there are still more than 200 operating coffeeshops that cater to every stripe of the smoking community. Each has its own distinctive ambience, its own musical direction, its own menu of weed and hash, its own non-alcoholic drink specialties, and its own idiosyncratic clientele.

There are coffeeshops in far-flung neighborhoods for the local tokers, many varied spots in the Centrum for touring smokers of every origination, hard-rock coffeeshops, joints that play house music, rap, reggae, jazz and classic rock. If you’re a resident or a regular visitor, you choose your favorite hang and fall in whenever you want to. It’ll have the menu you want to pick from, the music you want to hear and the patrons you want to be with, or you move on to another place that looks like where you want to be at.

As a life-long daily marijuana smoker, this is my idea of civilization. In my old age I’ve managed to arrange my affairs so I can get to stay in Amsterdam for about half the year, traveling to London and around Europe to perform as requested and returning to the States to visit my daughters and granddaughters, do enough work to keep paying my way, and stay in touch with what my hundreds of friends in Detroit and New Orleans and all around the country are doing to make life more interesting all the time.

One of my brightest dreams remains to establish a coffeeshop like this in Detroit where the laws would now allow it, a place where registered marijuana patients could come, present their cards, take a seat at the table of their choice, have a coffee or a juice or a soft drink with their friends, and light up and be somebody while the music of Radio Free Amsterdam is played continuously as the appropriate soundtrack for the setting.

I’m out of space for this month but think about how great that will be when it finally happens. Free The Weed!

May 25, 2014
© 2014 John Sinclair. All Rights Reserved.

Rob Tyner, lead singer MC5 – Interviewed by John Sinclair May 1967 for THE SUN.

February 11, 2013

The following interview with Robin Tyner, lead singer of the MC-5, the major Detroit avant-rock band, was recorded by John Sinclair in the first week of May, 1967, for THE SUN. The MC-5 has been together for almost three years and has developed into one of the most exciting bands to be heard anywhere. The group comprises Tyner, lead singer, harmonica, auto-harp, etc.; Wayne Kramer, lead guitar; Fred Smith, rhythm guitar; Michael Davis, bass; and Dennis Thompson, drums. Their first 45 single, “I Can Only Give You Everything.” has recently been released on the AMG label, and an album is being planned now. Tyner himself is not only a brilliant singer and leader but also draws, does cartoons, writes songs, and is writing a book of exercises for lead singers which will be published soon by the Artists’ Workshop Press/Detroit.

Rob Tyner - MC5 Lead Singer Interview 1967 (1)

JS: Let’s talk about the music….

RT: Well, as I see it, the real music scene in Detroit is doing all right. But the whole—the population of all the musicians—and there’s an awful lot of young musicians in town—the percentage of these people who are really into it is so low that you never get to hear any of it. I mean if there is somebody in town who is really into it, you know, in the straight teeny-bopper scene, we never get to hear them. I’ve heard very few bands in this city that I can even listen to—like, there’s Billy C. and the Sunshine, I have to mention those cats—but the whole thing is very appalling. Because being a musician, I’ve lost all my sense of being entertained. You know, I can’t be entertained at all, because I’m an entertainer. I know that this Isn’t like, AH! A SHOW!, but just guys up there working a job like I work a job, and I’ve lost my concept of that. But to see somebody get up there and actually work, like work on a musical plane, to get onto these planes and just drive and work like a motherfucker, you just don’t see it. Except, of course, when you’re listening to the three or four good bands in town, or in the area—the ones I’ve heard. And I hope to God there’s more people, you know. And there will be. Because the real people are getting good, so the people who copy them will have to get good. So pretty soon it’ll be…well, I have no worries about the scene, let me put it that way. Because it’s just going OVER THERE, you know, from all the contact. Like, you go to the Grande Ballroom and what do you see? You see, like, Billy C. and the Sunshine three times—there are bands who are Billy C.; or who are the SpikeDrivers or the Southbound Freeway, you know, you find that even now there’s a small amount of hereo-worship going on, and copping different numbers and things. It used to be that you’d go to the Grande and there’d be 4 or 5 MC-5 bands, 2 or 3 Billy C. and the Sunshines, the Back & Back Boo Funny Music band…and those people used to be sort of a driving influence there, but it’s gotten so far now that we can’t even play there anymore. At any rate, the musicians who do copy, who’ve got it down, you dig, and they’ll be getting into it pretty soon. Because every band comes, you know, you get five people together, or four people, in a band, who have got it, and you’ll just come. One night you’ll be up there on the stand and you’ll just come, and the people will just flip out, and it will be together, I felt in my group, you know, like “unhhh, unnhhh, I’m coming,” and then POW!–one night we EXPLODED. We didn’t care if the people dug it or not, and musically we just exploded. We used to do our “avant” numbers as sort of unleashing a monster on the crowd—we didn’t care if they liked it, we hoped they hated it, because we were killing them, we were shooting them down with these monstrous amplifiers and we just didn’t care. We were obnoxious. We’d get up and do all of our tunes, and then at the end, we’d come.

JS: “Black to come,” yes. That always makes me think of William Burroughs, you know, “People of the earth to come out….”

RT: The job is getting rougher every day, getting more and more demanding, on the part of singers in general. There are people in the world who are shooting the scene farther and farther, and it’s going so fast that you have to RUN to keep up with it. A year and a half ago, back in the early days of Mick Jaggerdom, that’s when a singer didn’t have to DO anything but be a singer and do his act—and he didn’t even have to sound good, because that was hip back then—sound a little raspy, sing a little flat, and that was cool, because a little farther back it was Sinatra, you know, and he didn’t do anything either. But nowadays, singing…I mean listen to Spencer Davis for a minute, and you can tell that he’s obviously IN IT. He took a left turn at Ray Charles and…

JS: Disappeared….

RT: Right. He shot it right out there. You just can’t be a “singer” any more, you got to DO IT! You got to be together musically…your voice has got to be so good, man, because the people demand it. They won’t let you shuck anymore. Listen…I’m no longer talking to John Sinclair, I’m talking to the public: people of the world, the next time you see a live band, and they go up there and do top ten material, you oughta turn on them and say PLAY THE MUSIC—either play the music or GET OFF THE STAND. Tell them that…. The lead singer of the future will have to be the most versatile cat in the band, because he has to be THE solo instrument. The lead singer and the lead guitarist are the ones who do actual note-run solos. The rhythm guitar player does feedbacks and keeps the sound up. The rhythm guitar is no longer just a-chink a-chink a-chink, it’s an art all in itself. Anybody can go the note-run route, you know, like lead singers and lead guitar players—you can express yourself beautifully with note-runs, you hear it all the time—Jeff Beck, Mike Bloomfield, they can run it down with notes. But it takes more to play a different game—the rhythm guitar has to carry the band’s sound all by himself. He’s got to BE THERE. And I haven’t heard too many of that kind of player yet…

Rob Tyner - MC5 Lead Singer Interview 1967 (2)

JS: Well, I think you’ve found one…(IN UNISEN): Fred Smith…(sigh)

RT: Yes…I’d like to thank all the cats in my band for getting as far as they have, and I wish them luck for the future. (Laughter) But as far as being a lead singer goes, in another year and a half the lead singer will have to be the most multi-instrumentalist person in the band. Lead singers should be in there playing tenor saxophones, and alto, and bassoon, oboe, everything else…harmonica, which is like a sanctioned instrument for rock&roll. I got onto that the first time I heard Mick Jagger, Gary Grimshaw brought the record over and I knew the second I heard it that I had to be a singer. So I had this harmonica I’d picked up a couple weeks earlier, and I got right down in there with that. I tried for months and months but couldn’t do anything with it. Then one night I was at a beer party and some cat told me that all blue notes are “in” notes—draw notes—and that did it. That straightened me right out. Every lead singer should have a whole range of instruments, like say, Joseph Jarman has…belles, wind chimes, gongs, and anything else that makes music. I’ve been playing organ, auto-harp, chromatic harmonica, Japanese flute, recorder, and something else…I can’t remember what it is. (Laughter) That’s why I began going into the realms of the sonic…playing feedback off the microphone. Hey, singers! You’ve got an instrument! Anyone who’s got a sound system has got an instrument. You can play the microphone.

JS: I’ve always wondered how you picked up on that. Did you hear someone doing it, or did you just discover it?

RT: We were playing at a party at Betty Conn’s house one night, a wild beer party, and we played “Hang on Sloopy” for 45 minutes, and I said to myself, “there’s got to be something else we can do,” because my voice was gone, and I’d been playing harmonica until my mouth bled, you know, and I felt that there was something else we should be doing—because I had to keep the level up there, we were using guitar, bass and drums at that point and we just kept going and kept going. That was when we were first getting into it, getting farther than what comes out of the radio speaker, and it was a question of what could we do to take it even farther. So I told everyone, in the course of the song, to listen because something really spectacular was going to happen. And they wanted something spectacular, you know, everybody was just sweating and screaming, because if you take a tune like that a drag it out, it gets so much power, like a mantra, you just say it until it’s got so much power that you can’t hold it any more and it explodes, and it HAPPENS. So I went over to my line speaker and shoved my microphone into it, and some glorious and beautiful sounds came out of the speakers and the amps. So I began doing that profusely.

JS: When was that? Who was in the band then? Were they working on feedback by that time?

RT: That was about two years ago, and we had just begun to break into it. That was a few nights before we actually did it on stage. We did it in Dearborn, and we just EXPLODED out there. The first night we did “Black to Come,” we wrote it down in Kramer’s basement, and Fred Smith discovered that you could turn up the Super-Beatle amp until it was unbearable, right. And started playing the opening chords to “Comm” spontaneously and smashed a jar! At that time our group—we had Pat Burroughs and Rob Gasper on bass and drums. Gasper now has a really beautiful, very tight band—the Endless Chain—really together. Gasper’s a tight drummer anyway. Burroughs elected to go to the Marin Corps.

JS: Is that when Michael Davis joined the band?

RT: Right. And we picked up Dennis Thompson from Lincoln Park—he played in a bar with us a couple nights, and I guess we just scared him into being our drummer.

JS: The powerhouse….

RT: You see, the thing is that Dennis amazes me…I don’t want to say anything about Dennis—I’ll just embarrass him… (Laughter)

JS: You have a lot of trouble with the technology, right? I know I’ve talked with people about this, like Marion Brown, the saxophonist, we were talking once about the arrest pushing the technology to make them come up with adequate tools….

RT: Yes, soon there will be an amplifier that can take….

JS: The MC-5….

RT: That can take sustained feedbacks. Oh, incidentally, I have to mention…if you singers want to play the microphone and the speaker, you’re doing it at your own risk. Because you can melt down your whole system that way. It isn’t a good thing for your speaker, but it sure is groovy. And I don’t want some cat coming up and telling me that I made him blow his set up, you know, so make sure this part gets in, OK? That too is an instrument. Like one night I dreamed I vomited on stage…think about that one! But I feel that it’s the duty of every lead singer to seek and find Joseph Jarman, and watch him! Because Joseph Jarman is the best lead singer that took the multi-instrumentalist route. In fact, most tenor players would make good lead singers.

JS: Yeah, they do, in fact, like Archie Shepp has said. Pharaoh Sanders, Archie, Albert Ayler, Roscoe Mitchell…Trane, all those cats.

RT: We saw Joseph Jarman out at Cranbrook last week and it was one of the most amazing things I’ve ever seen. Now, seemingly there’s no connection between rock&roll music and “avant-garde” jazz—they seem to be totally unconnected—but they aren’t.

JS: Right. These days most of the players come out of rock&roll, or rhythm & blues, anyway, like Archie Shepp says his biggest influence was Eddie “Lockjaw” Davis and all those old screaming cats. Or Albert Ayler used to play with Little Walter’s band. Like Pharoah Sanders, on MEDITATIONS, right in the middle of “Consequences,” playing way up in the fifth register of his horn, screaming his ass off, and all of a sudden you hear him throw in “Hold On I’m Coming” by Sam and Dave. Blows your mind.

Rob Tyner - MC5 Lead Singer Interview 1967 (3)

RT: What I really dig is the new resurgence of the Memphis Sound—that’s beautiful, man. Carla Thomas and Otis Redding. Um um. Joe Tex and Aretha. Yeah. Aretha Franklin, if you read this, I love you. I wonder if you need a band to back you up. I’ll just play the harmonica for you if you want. (Laughter)

JS: Yeah, you know Aretha started out as a jazz singer.

RT: Naturally. I started out as a jazz freak. So did you, so did…I mean shit, you have to have your chops together before you can do it.

JS: That seems to be the difference, actually, with the new rock&roll, and that’s the thing that seems to me to be the most exciting thing about the new rock, outside of the music itself—that the rock players are becoming musicians now, not just plastic guitar strummers, bouncer up and downers….

RT: Well, yeah, I mean, what else are you gonna do? I’m sure everybody who digs rock&roll will thank the British cats very much, because they’re the ones who started the whole thing, they made us into musicians….

JS: Right. And the British got theirs from the r&b people over here.

RT: They just turned it around, they just gave it the emphasis….I think they ought to be rewarded for that.

JS: Well, they have been….(Laughter)

RT: I think we oughta erect a shrine to them, to say “thank you very much.” Because, see, rock&roll began, and then it was perverted immediately—because of the American radio scene. Perversion. You know, it just became Connie Francis, and Bobby Rydell, and Fabian and those cats….

JS: That’s what drove me away from rock&roll back in 1959. Like, I’d been a rock&roll freak in high school, and then when those other cats came around I started listening to jazz and just wasn’t interested in what those people were doing at all.

RT: After rock&roll became perverted, I watched it go down. And I was glad to see it go. Because it started off so beautifully, man, and it wound up so fucking malignantly corrupt, you know, that I was glad it just sank. Because after it sank, man, I turned my face toward Cannonball naturally and all those cats. And then a young man by the name of John Coltrane took over my heart and soul for a while. And just at the point Coltrane was about to come, see, and I could have been there to see it happen. But by then I was watching Mick Jagger and people, and getting my head tore up by cats who were doing the same type thing as the Adderleys were doing, only a little glossier because for me jazz had remained a static thing…Cannonball and the people of his genre, Herbie Hancock, the Jazz Crusaders—remember those cats, “Young Rabbits” and all that shit.

JS: You talked about the American radio system, which was responsible for all that shit being popular, and it wouldn’t let people know what was really going on in jazz at that time—Cecil Taylor, Ornette, Eric Dolphy, and all that beautiful music….

RT: Right! Radio stations ought to be bombed, right off the face of the earth. They’re a malignancy on our growth. Phew. I mean there are some parts of this cancerous corruption, man, that are OK. But then…then there’s radio stations. Any part of a cancer is still a malignancy, and you can’t sacrifice everything for just one part that isn’t so corrupt. But the AM radio scene is just ridiculous.

JS: It’ll change, though….

RT: Oh, sure it’ll change. It’s got to change. If it dosen’t, then nobody’ll believe it. We just won’t stand for it.

JS: Like what you were telling the people at the Love-In-Sunday, when the Seventh Seal and Billy C. were playing, that the people would have to demand to hear this music on the radio…because they don’t even know that the music exists, unless they hear it on the radio.

RT: Right, right….Anything that comes out of the box—any air disturbance or turbulence that comes out of the speaker—has to be made by somebody. And it can always be made better. Always. Any sound you hear can be made better. Remember that, man, because the depth and range of human musical ability is endless. Totally endless, man. You can do anything—ANYTHING—you can make the most fantastically gorgeous, soul-stirring beautiful phantasmagorical music, or you can make bullshit. You know!

JS: All bullshitters must be prosecuted! Semark had a beautiful story about that—did you see that? “The Judgment of Edmund Zwingy,” it was in CHANGE/2 I think.

RT: Yeah, I saw that! It burned into my skin! In fact, that was what turned my eyeballs to the malignancy, that story did. Read it, people—lead singer musicians, pick it up and take a good look at it. Also, for your convenience, the quotation at the top of this interview—you can clip it out and carry it in your wallet and look at it every time before you go on. Because John Tchical wouldn’t steer you wrong. That’s it! That’s the rules to the game.

JS: What about material? Like some of the things you’ve been doing lately that’ve been blowing my mind, making up lyrics as you go along that come out of the specific situation. Like at the Guerrilla Lovefare happening this winter, with all those beautiful vibrations flowing and throbbing in the room, and in the middle of “comm” you started singing., “Here we are people, / Look what we can do”….Amazing….

RT: That’s because the situation was amazing. It has to do with the situation, that’s all. Don’t forget—people listening to live music jump into a game situation and it becomes magic—and it’s beautiful, man, because while the vibrations are flowing all around you and it’s magic, you’re still living in the real world. So during the magic, if somebody tells you where you are in the real world, it burns home. It hits you outside of the magic of the music…it burns right through the magic of the music and hits you in the real world. The real world is terribly imporatant—don’t get hung up in the amphetamine-mouthed rapping, the real world is beautiful, and the music is magic.

JS: Singers and musicians were always, in ancient cultures, and in our own Western culture it’s especially true, before “literature,” in the oral culture all learning was passed on through the poets and the musicians.

RT: Magicians….

JS: Poets were magicians.

RT: Of course. Poets are magicians, everybody’s a magician, man.

JS: And all learning was passed on that way. And now we’re talking about a return to an oral culture, less and less people read, and people are getting what they know off the radio, off the records…you can hear it, and that makes it more immediately REAL.

Mail to the SUN,
4857 John Lodge, Detroit, 48201.

You can find rare stuff by MC5 and also John Sinclair in the Iron Man shop here:

Sensa Yuma – Kickin' & Screamin' Tour May 2012

May 18, 2012

Sensa Yuma - Kickin' & Screamin' Tour May 2012


23 Koln Sonic ballroom
24 Bremen Friese
25 Frankfurt AU
26 Berlin Kopi
27 Berlin Demo (morning)
27 Leipzig Open Air Fest

Nightingales – "No Love Lost" Tour Dates with Ted Chippington May & June 2012

April 5, 2012

Nightingales PROMO Photo FEB 2012

Nightingales and Ted Chippington on Tour


Fri 25 – Stewart Lee gig in wolves
Tue 29 – SHREWSBURY, The Vaults
Wed 30 – BRIGHTON, Green Door Store


Fri 1 – LONDON, Nambucca
Sat 2 – SOUTHAMPTON, Talking Heads
Sun 3 – WOLVERHAMPTON, Slade Rooms
Mon 4 – YORK, Fibbers
Tue 5 – MANCHESTER, Night & Day
Wed 6 – GLASGOW, Nice N Sleazy
Fri 8 – BIRMINGHAM, Wagon and Horses
Sat 9 – BRISTOL, Thunderbolt
Sun 10 – KIDDERMINSTER, The Boars Head
Nightingales - No Love Lost album cover

“The new album by Nightingales is brilliant. One of the fiercest and most exhilarating rock records I’ve heard in ages.” Andrew Male, MOJO

Buy Nightingales – “No Love Lost” on eBay here

The first album by the latest Nightingales line up featuring the return of Matt Wood on guitar and new drummer Fliss Kitson
Recorded at Faust Studio, Germany in December 2011 “No Love Lost” is the first record by the group for Cooking Vinyl
Released in beautiful Digipak sleeve with original artwork by brilliant Scarborough based artist Jehan

1. Ace Of Hearts
2. Born Yesterday
3. The Done Thing
4. Real Gone Daddy
5. Best Of British Luck
6. Say It With Flowers
7. The Burster
8. The Dishwater Kid
9. Someone For Everyone
10. Sentimental Dunce
11. Mutton To Lamb
12. The World Of Nothing Really
13. Dick The Do-Gooder

Catalogue # COOKCD557

No Love Lost – Reviews:

Nightingales – “No Love Lost” album reviewed here by Louder Than war

Nightingales – “No Love Lost” album review by The Quietus

Nightingales – “No Love Lost” album review by Tasty Fanzine

Nightingales – “No Love Lost” album review by Penny Black Music

Nightingales – “No Love Lost” album review by

Nightingales ‘No Love Lost’ (Cooking Vinyl) – Losing Today May 2012

The Nightingales – you’re familiar with them right – once the Prefects, been around since dinosaurs roamed the earth (or so the youth of today would have you believe when you mention anything that passed before they came to be), around at a time when releases came pressed up on wax and the only way to gage whether a record was much cop was to have it featured in the NME (indeed dear people the same NME that these days sadly looks like a giant advertising insert with occasional music things and a back slapping name check for bands / artists you‘d couldn’t care to read about less breathe the same air as), played by Peel or shoved in front of your face by your in-tuned pulse feeling record emporium owner. Talking of Peel – he admired them so much that like the equally loved Fall, Wedding Present, Beatnik Filmstars and many others to numerous to name (though the three mentioned with the addition of Fatima Mansions (best viewed here on the schizoid powered prickly pop of the Cathal Coughlan meets Beefheart needle sharp blister blues ‘Born Yesterday’) all appear to share a common melodic mindset to the Nightingales in so far as each has emerged from musical reference markers not quite so easily obvious), he’d have them in for regular sessions and play list them at every given opportunity whether you liked them or not with resolute and unwavering conviction that he was right and you were wrong. And of course he was.

Several line ups over the years following 2004’s reformation and now sporting a new label after signing to Cooking Vinyl, the Nightingales of 2012 are a totally different proposition to the tykes whose awkward aural aerosol spiked the airwaves in the early 80’s, these days tighter and at the peak of their powers ’No Love Lost’ seers, scolds and sizzles with all the air of a collective mindset with the bit between their teeth and demanding attention. Rarely have I heard Lloyd and co sounding so forthright, bullish and at peace and enjoying themselves in the process. There’s an urgency about ‘No Love Lost’ its an urgency that encircles the would be listener the moment the opening salvo ‘Ace of Hearts’ rears into ear view wherein your dropkicked immediately into a sea of sonic shrapnel with its twang taunting 50’s informed beat grooved boogie. Elsewhere the kick-ass paint bombing punked up power pop scowl of ‘Real Gone Daddy’ comes across initially like a teen spirited day-glo dinked Rezillos before exiting stage left in a haze of squalling feedback attrition while the shoe shuffling pub rock rumble ‘Best Of British Luck‘ tailgates a youthful Dalmatian Rex and the Eigentones. Old school purists of Nightingales of old should find much with the wiring art pop grizzled math dislocation of both ‘The Burster’ and ‘Dishwater Kid’ to keep them satiated the latter especially finding itself huffing and puffing with a reserved cool as it shimmies casually smooching up to the stylus. Braided with a slyly effervescent 60’s pop persona and showered with echoes of his sole solo effort ‘Me and My Big Mouth‘ – ‘Something for Everyone’ shimmies and shakes to a sun lined feel good accent that should see it assured of radio play action while the mellowing ’The World of Nothing Really’ is cradled in a wounded soft reflection which leaves the frenetic ramshackle spike of ’Dick the Do Gooder’ to round off the set to reveal a fierce some spirit of intent especially at its finale as it dissolves into a sea of head melting cacophonic skree. That said with its snaking slow to burn motifs, nothing quite comes close to the pure mercurial beauty of ’the done thing’ – with its droning ’Low’-esque minimalist chill nodding to a Berlin era Bowie applied and enhanced with howling halos of souring and soaring feedback and lightly kissed with smidgeons of the Weddoes ‘Dalliance’ and the Fall’s ‘Bill is Dead’ to be rounded up into a majestically quiet subdued euphoric glow by Decoration themselves powered via an Arab Strap bypass. Sublime in a word.


Well, well, well the funniest man alive is back! Ted Chippington at last brings to vinyl one of his top true stories – “Blues Fan”.
A really hilarious moment in Ted’s life, recalled with style, makes the long awaited record release of this classic story an immediate TC greatest hit!
And this Top Comedian does not stand still!
Check out the B-Side of this platter for new experimental Ted material.
A brace of rip-roaring impressions of showbiz legends Phil Collins and Benny Hill’s mate are intercut with live show stormer “Mint” and a true story wig out featuring TC & The Sunshine Band, Ted’s all American female backing group.
A hero to your favourite comics and pop stars. A good mate of the ordinary folk. A clean living, straight talking, hard working entertainer. A top bloke.
And now another great record – “Blues Fan” is the maestro’s best release yet.
Ted Chippington is to be appreciated – he’s mint!

A – Blues Fan
B – Phil Collins Impression + Mint + Impression Of Benny Hill’s Mate + Sunshine

Available at live shows & mail order from the Iron Man Shop on eBay here
LONDON, Power Lunches Arts Cafe (Dalston)


Born out of Birmingham’s original punk group The Prefects, the Nightingales have stubbornly ploughed their own furrow in the field of alternative rock n roll for three decades. Described in John Robb’s definitive post punk biography ‘Death To Trad Rock’ as “the misfits’ misfits”, the band has constantly garnered praise and respect from other artists and received endless glowing press reports, particularly for their live shows. Led by singer/lyricist Robert Lloyd (‘The most underestimated songwriter of his generation’ according to Ben Thompson in the Independent) the latest incarnation of the Nightingales – the best batch – yet release their new album “No Love Lost” on Cooking Vinyl in April 2012.

To coincide with the album’s release the Nightingales will be touring the UK and mainland Europe. The UK shows follow their May 2011 tour which culminated in a headline performance at the Southbank Centre in London as part of Stewart Lee’s Austerity Binge and the Festival Of Britain, which Mojo magazine called “Astonishing” and “Gig of the year”.

Birmingham’s original punk group The Prefects had been part of The Clash’s ‘White Riot Tour’, recorded a couple of Peel sessions, released a 45 on Rough Trade and, years after splitting up, had a retrospective CD released by NY label Acute Records to all round glowing reviews – from Rolling Stone to webzines.

The Nightingales was formed by former members of The Prefects following that band’s demise in 1979.

With an ever fluctuating line up, based around lyricist/singer Robert Lloyd, the Nightingales enjoyed cult status in the early ’80’s as darlings of the credible music scene and were championed by John Peel, who said of them – “Their performances will serve to confirm their excellence when we are far enough distanced from the 1980’s to look at the period rationally and other, infinitely better known, bands stand revealed as charlatans”.

The group recorded a bunch of critically acclaimed singles (Almost always ‘Single Of The Week’ in the music press) and three albums, plus many radio sessions for their great supporter Peel – more than any other band bar The Fall. They also regularly toured the UK and Northern Europe, as headliners and supporting acts as diverse as Bo Diddley and Nico.

In the late Eighties the Nightingales stopped working but, following the occasional gig between times, they re-grouped in 2004, with Lloyd being joined by original Prefects guitarist Alan Apperley.

After fucking about with various wastrels, precious sorts and mercenaries the group arrived at it’s current line up, which features Lloyd, Apperley, Andreas Schmid (Faust Studio engineer) on bass, ex Violet Violet drummer Fliss Kitson and guitarist Matt Wood.

Since restarting the group have been more productive than ever – releasing five 7″ vinyl singles and three studio albums (Plus two live ‘bootleg’ albums), touring England, mainland Europe and USA numerous times, recording many radio sessions along the way. They have been invited to play various festivals in Europe and the States, including Glastonbury and SXSW. Their “Let’s Think About Living” 45 was ‘Single Of The Week’ on BBC 6 Music and they have continued to receive regular rave reviews for their records and live shows.

In 2008 the band recorded “Insult to Injury” produced by Hans Joachim Irmler of krautrock legends Faust which was released in 2009 on Irmler’s Klangbad label and “The Lost Plot”, an Irmler produced 10″ EP was released to coincide with the band’s Euro tours in 2011.

“No Love Lost” the new Nightingales album – their finest yet and first for Cooking Vinyl – was also recorded at Faust Studio in Germany but this time self produced and will be released in April 2012.

The group will be touring the UK in May, followed by dates in Europe, a bunch of festivalsduring the Summer and another U.S tour later in the year.

In addition to the group’s own activity there is a Nightingales ‘tribute’ album planned featuring ‘Gales covers by punk and post punk legends (Raincoats, Mekons, Subway Sect, others), young contemporary bands (Art Brut, Lovely Eggs, others), stand up comedians (Stewart Lee, Phill Jupitus) and academic/author Greil Marcus.

from Southbank web site:

Birmingham’s indomitable punk survivors fuse Beefheart licks and pulverising rhythms with a strangely sensitive cynicism, and arrive at Southbank Centre in advance of imminent National Treasure status. ‘One day their excellence will be confirmed, as other, infinitely better known, bands stand revealed as charlatans.’ (John Peel on The Nightingales)

small selection of recent press:

Nothing could have prepared for the astonishing revelation of Robert Lloyd’s Nightingales… The cumulative effect is one of euphoric delight, of old knowledge in the hands of new disciples. “Dig the depth of the furrow of mirth that I can plough,” sings Lloyd on The Overreactor. Tonight The Nightingales hit an epic new low. Catch them when they’re at it again – MOJO, UK

The Nightingales have always been simply a great rock ‘n’ roll band and 32 years on they’re right at the top of their game – THE STOOL PIGEON, UK

The Nightingales – they’re back and they’re marvellous – MARC RILEY/BBC 6 MUSIC, UK

Nightingales are unreal. The level of playing and songwriting after their post-punk hiatus is unparalled by any of their generational comeback cohorts – TERRE T/WFMU, USA

With The Fall getting Lifetime Achievement awards and Gang Of Four canonised it is long past time the wayward genius of Robert Lloyd and his cohorts was recognised – RECORD COLLECTOR, UK

Rock & Roll at its best – SUDDEUTSCHE ZEITUNG, GERMANY

Consistently excellent, the Nightingales are back, as ferociously sardonic as ever. Nice to see them still mad, still funny, still wrecking the furniture after all these years. – DUSTED, USA

Shows just how poor these skinny jeaned little shits currently doing the rounds really are. – TASTY, UK

The Nightingales in Southend on Friday jetted in to my top ten gigs of all time – PHILL JUPITUS/BBC 6 MUSIC, UK

Forget all these NME Band of the Week types, who make out they don’t care, they won’t compromise, etc, whilst wearing the same indie uniform and churning out the same tired old riffs. They don’t need your attention. The Nightingales do. Because rock ‘n’ roll rarely gets as uncompromising as this – PLASTELIN, SERBIA

The Nightingales revisited their past and offered up the future. Still stunningly relevant – LONDON EVENING STANDARD, UK

The Nightingales subjugate a rapt and breathless audience with a performance of sinewy magnificence – DAILY TELEGRAPH, UK
Tuesday night at the Cake Shop in NYC. One of the best shows I’ve seen in years. Jangly, angsty, angular, punk, post-punk, just rock and roll, whatever, they destroyed – DAN SELZER/ILXOR, USA

The Nightingales have been responsible for some of the most genuinely innovative minority music of the past three decades. – THE QUIETUS, UK

They sound wired, edgy, boozy and as dangerous as ever, like a new band full of that energy that comes with those first moves and not a band who’ve been doing this since the start of punk. Robert Lloyd really shouldn’t be this good after all these years, should he? – THE ORGAN, UK

Boozy and deranged, Insult to Injury is how the new Franz record ought to sound – VICE, UK

This is a living, breathing beast of an album – ARTROCKER MAGAZINE, UK

This is their fiercest, most lacerating album yet, better by a good margin than the mid-1980s Pigs on Purpose…and that was excellent – BLURT, USA

Their freshest and most subtly intoxicating work to date – OBSERVER MUSIC MONTHLY, UK

The new album from the ‘Gales is their finest for 27 years. Start here and work backwards – SUNDAY TIMES, UK

Unlovable as ever. The Nightingales remain hard work for precious little gain – MOJO, UK

“The new album by Nightingales is brilliant. One of the fiercest and most exhilarating rock records I’ve heard in ages.” Andrew Male, MOJO

Nightingales ‘No Love Lost’ cd/dd – Cooking Vinyl – Released April 30th 2012 – Press Report March 30th 2012


Marc Riley played ‘Dishwater Kid’ on Wednesday 28th March

BBC6Music – Marc Riley played ‘The Burster’ on Thursday 22nd March

BBC 6Music – Marc Riley played ‘Best of British Luck’ on 8th,13th and 19th March

Resonance FM – (London) Artrocker Radio – played ‘Ace of Hearts’ on 19th March

Buy Nightingales CDs and more here:

Nightingales - No Love Lost Tour Dates poster 2012

Buy Nightingales and Ted Chippington stuff here

P.A.I.N play Bearded Theory Festival Main Stage on 15th May 2011 at Keldeston Park, Derbyshire

February 6, 2011

P.A.I.N are playing the Bearded Theory festival Main Stage on Sunday 15th May 2011 at Keldeston Park, Derbyshire. please check the line up on the festival website just in case dates or times are changed.

“Something completely different – a refreshing change” BBC Entertainment

Bearded Theory Festival will be celebrating its fourth successful year in 2011 and is enjoying being the fastest growing UK Festival.

The record breaking party with Beards, Bands, Arts, Crafts, Weddings, DJs and General Daftness, is a three day music festival that has now firmly entrenched itself as being the first “proper” festival of the season.

Every year Bearded Theory attempts to break the world record for the most amount of people wearing a fancy dress beards in one place and at one time. We want to live up to our bizarre name and invite everyone that attends to take part.

P.A.I.N play heavy dub reggae, good time ska, pissed off punk rock, and endeavour to keep their heads around the contradictory and confusing areas of radical politics. The Band has supported numerous underground struggles and pressure groups along the way.

Phil Pain: Vox and Guitar
Captain Ozbert: Vox and Bass
Dan the Man: Vox and Drums
Steuie Boh: Vox and Percussion and Saxophone
Steo: Vox and Samples

P.A.I.N Gig Bookings: email: steopain at
Iron Man Records: (uk+44) 07974 746810 mark at

P.A.I.N Facebook Page

P.A.I.N - TShirt design

Punk and Disorderly in Brum – Punk All Dayer May 22nd 2010 Birmingham

March 1, 2010

Punk & Disorderly in Brum - Punk all dayer may 22nd 2010

Punk & Disorderly in Brum – Punk All Dayer May 22nd 2010

Punks alive collective gig

Bands playing:

Last Under The Sun
Apocalypse Babies
Genital Deformities
Dun to Def
Wasted Life
Human Battle (greece)
External menace
Redflag 77

The Old Wharf, Oxford Street, Digbeth, B5 5NR first band on at midday £15 in


February 15, 2010


LONDON BADFEST takes place at The London International Amphi Theatre, Brentford, London on Easter bank holiday weekend 28th May – 30th May 2010. Line up and ticket info to be announced soon. There is a rumour that P.A.I.N may be playing, keep an eye out for more information.

Police Bastard – Frankfurt AU 17th April 2009 Photos

May 25, 2009


January 30, 2009


May we bring to your attention some very fine appetizers in the music spheres of The Glee! We shall also have some further exciting names to announce over the next couple of weeks! Please keep peekin’ at

Wednesday 11th February
Robyn Hitchcock & friends plus Catherine Feeny as guest support

Friday 20th February
Jonatha Brook (The Works : The Words of Woody Guthrie)

Wednesday 25th February
Emmy The Great (album First Love out on February 9th)

Tuesday 3rd March
Imelda May (single – Johnny Got A Boom Boom out now!)

Sunday 15th March
Nick Harper (Nick returns for another thrilling ‘forces of nature’ performance!)

Wednesday 18th March
Lionel Loueke (Herbie Hancock’s acclaimed guitarist)

Monday 30th March
Frightened Rabbit (acoustic album out soon)

Tuesday 14th April
Foy Vance (Glee favourite Foy returns with his gritty impassioned soul songs)

Tuesday 21st April
Ben Taylor (son of James Taylor & Carly Simon returns to glee)

Friday 22nd May
Great Lake Swimmers (we welcome back the sublime Canadian songsmiths)

Sunday 24th May
The Hot Club Of Cowtown (an unmissable joyful night of swingin’ jazz from Dylan collaborator)

Monday 25th May
The Handsome Family (further surreal and engaging country tales promised!)

Tuesday 28th July
Emiliana Torrini – please note this is a re-scheduled date (all tickets remain valid)

*** Karima Francis show due to be confirmed within days for March (

We would also like to give a vibrant mention to a couple of shows taking place at The Town Hall by artists who have recently enjoyed sold-out shows at The Glee Club.

Saturday 7th February
Teddy Thompson & Tift Merritt

Friday 13th March
Noah & The Whale

Town Hall Box Office 0121 780 3333 /
Bat For Lashes, PJ Harvey and Anthony & The Johnsons are also upcoming

Stay tuned to…further shows to be announced very soon!
Catch you soon, Cheers! glee club music dept.

B5 4TD